Try Before You Buy

“Try before you buy” is a marketing technique that software manufacturers commonly use to generate interest in their products. It works like this: download their software and try using it for a few weeks. If you like the software and think it’s worth the price, buy it. Otherwise do nothing. When the trial period expires, the software is automatically disabled.

It occurred to me that a similar try-before-you-buy approach highlights an important benefit of a lending library: it’s a low risk transaction.

Before you buy a particular resource, try it out. Borrow a children’s book. Or a novel. Or a DVD. Or a missionary biography. Or a commentary. Or an audio book.

Read it. Watch it. Listen to it.

If you end up liking it and want to own a personal copy, buy it from your favorite bookseller, confident of what you’re getting.

On the other hand, if the resource didn’t meet your needs (or even if the resource did meet your needs, but you would rather spend your money in other ways), just return it before the due date, and pay absolutely nothing. (This policy is not unique to the Bethlehem Baptist Library!)

Either way, what do you have to lose?

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